Orange and apple slices not only look beautiful -- they smell delicious as well! Be creative in how you use them. In addition to their most common role as tree ornaments, they can also be strung onto garlands, tossed into holiday potpourri, fastened onto Christmas wreaths, and arranged artfully on the holiday dining table.
Using dried fruits as Christmas ornaments is an old-timey tradition that's coming back into fashion. Why? They are simple to make, inexpensive, and naturally beautiful. As you hang them on the tree, think of your citrus slices as an antidote to the expensive and stressful shop-stravaganza that the holiday season has become. Enjoy!
Do you remember the last time you were in some one's home that had an
apple pie baking in the oven? Ahhh, the aromas of a fresh baked pie --
it is simply irresistible!...Well, now you can recreate this delicious scent in your own home!
For each apple craft, you will need
Juice of approximately 8-10 lemons
2 teaspoons salt
8 - 10 large firm apples
8 teaspoons cinnamon
2 teaspoons allspice
1 teaspoon cloves
8" - 10" sturdy, heavy gauge wire (for a wreath)
Jute (for garland or apple stacker)
1 to 1-1/2 yards of ribbon or fabric scraps
To prepare and dry your apples
Place lemon juice in a large bowl, and stir in salt.
Peel, core, and slice apples horizontally into 1/4" thick circles.
Soak slices in lemon juice bowl for approximately 6-10 minutes, making
sure each side of the slices has a chance to absorb some of the lemon
Meanwhile, mix spices in a bowl and blend well.
Remove the slices from the bowl and place them on paper towels.
Pat tops of apple slices with paper towels.
Dust apples slices with spice mixture.
Turn slices over and repeat on opposite side.
Place apples slices in a single layer on a baking sheet.
Bake at 150-200 degrees F for 6 hours or until completely dried or use a food dehydrator like I do..
Apple slices should be slightly pliable.
To Make An Apple Wreath:
Fold each apple slice in half, and then into quarters and thread the
apples slices onto the wire.
Continue to pack on the folded apples until the wire is completely
When the wire is completely covered, use pliers to bend ends into hooks
so that they can connect and close.
Carefully shape wire into desired shape.
I recommend either a circle or heart shape.
Using your ribbon or fabric scraps, create a hanger for your wreath.
Hang on your wall, or package as a gift for someone special.
To Create An Apple Garland
Cut off enough jute for your desired length of garland - remember, your
apple garland shouldn't be too long, but approximately 2-4 feet works
Also, it is always better to have too much, than not enough.
Start stringing on apple slices.
Push one end of jute through the middle of each apple slice.
Consider alternating several apple slices and then a piece of tied on
Hang on your wall!
To Create An Apple Stacker
Using an approximate 12" piece of jute, tie one end to about three
cinnamon sticks that are laid in a a bundle.
Begin to string on apple slices by pushing jute through the center of
each slice. Consider alternating several slices with a piece of fabric
When apple stacker is the desired length, end with three more cinnamon
sticks in a bundle and tie a loop so that you can hang your apple
You will need the following:
three or four large oranges
lemon juice to cover orange slices
a sharp carving knife
glitter and/or ground cinnamon (optional)
fishing line or ribbon
a needle or a pointy-tipped knife
Step 1) Slice the oranges crosswise in quarter-inch slices. I use an electric food slicer
Step 2) Soak in the lemon juice for about 10 minutes.
Step 3) Lay slices flat on your oven rack. Use paper towels to blot away excess juice.
Step 4) If you like, gently rub ground cinnamon into the slices. Cinnamon makes them smell amazing. On the other hand, they won't catch the light as well. I made some with and some without.
Step 5) Bake at 275 degrees for the first hour and then 250 degrees for two more hours or until dried. (I use a Food Dehraytor)
Step 6) If you like, decorate the slices with glitter once the slices have cooled. Then, thread each slice onto a length of fishing line or ribbon. Now they can be hung on the tree.
DRIED APPLE & ORANGE SLICE ORNAMENTS
Step 1: Decorate the Fruit
Dry the fruit. Glue -- use a glue gun if desired -- the dried berries and miniature accessories (acorns, twigs, greenery, etc.) to the dried fruit slices.
Step 2: Attach the Ornaments to the Tree
Take a short piece of twine, glue to the back of the dried sliced fruit and hang on the tree.